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Turnout above normal expected for Minnesota primary



Voters in both Wisconsin and Minnesota have important decisions to make today.

Wisconsin voters have to narrow the field of contenders for governor and a U.S. Senate seat.

In Minnesota, even more is on the line.

There are primaries for governor with multiple candidates and both Senate seats, held by Amy Klobuchar and Tina Smith. 

Long-time southern Minnesota Congressman Tim Walz is one of the candidates for governor, so his House seat in the 1st Congressional District of southern Minnesota is up for grabs.

And a sexual misconduct scandal has complicated one campaign for attorney general.

The number of absentee ballots already cast in Minnesota is far above the number used in the summer primary two years ago.

State elections officials are saying absentee balloting is up about two-thirds from the level seen in August of 2016.

Winona County auditor Sandra Suchla said the demand for absentee ballots with over 400 voting early.

The number of absentee voters statewide is around 170,000.

Minnesota Secretary of State Steve Simon believes voters are paying more attention to the primary than they have in past years.

Along with those Senate seats, Winona County also has a county board primary and some large fields for school board races. 

To see a sample of your Minnesota ballot, click here.

Those running for governor (and Lt. governor) include:


  • Erin Murphy and Erin Maye-Quade
  • Lori Swanson and Rick Nolan
  • Tim Walz and Peggy Flanagan
  • Tim Holden and James P. Mellin II
  • Olé Savior and Chris Edman


  • Matt Kruse and Theresa Loeffler
  • Jeff Johnson and Donna Bergstrom
  • Tim Pawlenty and Michelle Fischbach

Those running for Walz’s House seat in District 1 include:


  • Dan Feehan
  • Colin “Coke” Minehart


  • Carla Nelson
  • Jim Hagedorn
  • Steve Williams
  • Andrew Candler

A native of Prairie du Chien, Brad graduated from UW - La Crosse and has worked in radio news for more than 30 years, mostly in the La Crosse area. He regularly covers local courts and city and county government. Brad produces the features "Yesterday in La Crosse" and "What's Buried on Brad's Desk." He also writes the website "Triviazoids," which finds odd connections between events that happen on a certain date, and he writes and performs with the local comedy group Heart of La Crosse. Brad been featured on several national TV programs because of his memory skills.

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